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Old 03-20-2020, 09:38 PM
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Default Ruger Mini-14 Foldable stocks (what the heck 10/22s too)

Anyone got one yet? I sure would like one but is it $280 cool? I have a new Mini-14.

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Old 03-20-2020, 10:01 PM
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Saw them when they first appeared and was very tempted compared to what the originals cost.

If youre a Mini14 fanboy and always wanted to scratch that itch the $280 doesnt seem that bad.
On the other hand you can buy a complete PSA AR15 for around $400.

Comes down to asking yourself do I want to put $300 into an inferior rifle so its looks like one from the 1980s A team .
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Old 03-20-2020, 10:21 PM
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I have two Mini-14s with the factory side folding stocks stashed in my safe. I don't feel as cool now as I once did when I thought I had something fairly rare.

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Old 03-21-2020, 12:18 AM
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I had a total of 5 Mini-14's back in the 80'sand early 90's. One had an aftermarket Choate side folding stock. Tacky looking, was difficult to use and a pain to shot with, especially from prone position.

The Factory folder and all the metal were stainless, and truly was almost rust proof. The factory system is pretty easy to use. But was uncomfortable to shoot with. Many people used closed cell foam insulation around the round bar to protect your face. If you went winter hunting, cold stainless is no more comforting than a rod of ice!

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Old 03-21-2020, 12:28 AM
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I had one of the Choate folding stocks Ivan mentions above on a 1980's Ruger Ranch Rifle. I thought it was pretty good actually, at least mine was, with a solid lock-up when open, though length of pull was a little short. Never tried it prone though. Might want to look around the interweb for one if its cheap enough. $280 sounds like a lot for a stock, but if you like it, why not - its only money... Poor 80's scanned pic of my Ruger below with the Choate stock, next to my old HK-91.

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Old 03-21-2020, 12:43 AM
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I have a couple of styles that will fit my 10/22. Just never installed one of them - yet.
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:55 AM
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Fishinfool: You seem to have a much nicer/later generation than my Choate folding stock. Yours had polymer covering most of the metal, that's very nice. But all of mine saw quite a bit of "dirt time", and the folding lock seemed to have a magnet that drew tiny grime that bound up everything.

My experience was: All the folding stocks were great looking, and if all the did was ride in a car or on a tractor, with an occasional offhand shot, they performed pretty well. But in my protracted war against groundhogs and other vermin, Were in dry dirt and leaf litter more often than not for hours a week every Spring, Summer, & Fall. and a few hours a month in the Winter. I didn't wallow in mud, but that would add an even greater grime factor that the folders wouldn't operate well in!

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Old 03-21-2020, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan the Butcher View Post
Fishinfool:

My experience was: All the folding stocks were great looking, and if all the did was ride in a car or on a tractor, with an occasional offhand shot, they performed pretty well.

Ivan
Had one decades ago on a 10/22 at the cabin....... played with another guys mini-14 with a folder a couple of times ................................

Ivan's pretty much summed it up in my limited experience. I rank them up there with pistol griped shotguns!

My NRA Mini-14 now wears a Hogue stock in Gillie green, Weaver 1-3x20 scope with 10 round factory mag. Very untacticooooool looking

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Old 03-21-2020, 12:26 PM
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I had one of the Choate folding stocks Ivan mentions above on a 1980's Ruger Ranch Rifle. I thought it was pretty good actually, at least mine was, with a solid lock-up when open, though length of pull was a little short. Never tried it prone though. Might want to look around the interweb for one if its cheap enough. $280 sounds like a lot for a stock, but if you like it, why not - its only money... Poor 80's scanned pic of my Ruger below with the Choate stock, next to my old HK-91.

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I had one on an AC-556. Now both are gone. I thought the market topped out about 1992. Good thing I'm not an investment advisor !!!!!!
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Old 03-21-2020, 01:49 PM
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Anyone got one yet? I sure would like one but is it $280 cool? I have a new Mini-14.

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If they are a faithful copy of the original Ruger folding stock then yes they are $280 cool. I just saw the price of my original Ruger factory folder go through the floor-you used to be able to sell those for $500-$750 in the used market
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Old 03-21-2020, 02:02 PM
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I remember the Butler Creek folding stocks that I guess are no longer made. What stock are you asking about?
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Old 03-21-2020, 02:05 PM
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If they are a faithful copy of the original Ruger folding stock then yes they are $280 cool. I just saw the price of my original Ruger factory folder go through the floor-you used to be able to sell those for $500-$750 in the used market

Do you like the Ruger folding stock???????????????????
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Old 03-21-2020, 03:00 PM
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.../

.../ On the other hand you can buy a complete PSA AR15 for around $400.

Comes down to asking yourself do I want to put $300 into an inferior rifle.../
That's a pretty harsh comparison to a $400 AR-15 from PSA.

Don't get me wrong, I have more than my fair share of AR-15s, including both low end PSA made AR-15s, as well as vintage Colt SP1s and Sporter IIs, as well as high end builds for various specific purposes (varmint hunting, service rifle competition, etc).

However, I also have a 184 series Mini 14 and a 187 series Ranch Rifle and I paid around $400 (used) for each of them.

Both of them have been relentlessly reliable (pro tip" stick with Ruger magazines), and both are capable of the same consistent 1.5 MOA 5 shot groups at 100 yards as my Colt SP1s and M16A1 upper (on an NDS 601 lower), using the same 55 gr Hornady FMJBT handloads at roughly M193 velocity.

Both of them are far superior to my PSA AR-15. It was a piece of ****. About half of it was salvageable and the rest of it is sitting in a box somewhere, with a bunch of spare parts, not worth the $50 or so it would cost me to get a lower for it and reassemble with already on hand spare parts.

Now...to be fair to get that level of accuracy in an early Mini 14 will cost some additional money. An Accu Strut barrel stabilizer cost $100, and a Choate flash hider/front sight cost another $50. Shock buffers are cheap and I turn my own undersized gas port bushings for basically nothing (but they are an $8-$10 part anyway). I also added Tech Sights rear sights to each of them ($80) just because it's a much better sight.

So it took about $160 to turn a 4-5 MOA rifle into a 1.5 MOA rifle, and another $80 to add a higher quality aftermarket sight.

That's still a $640 rifle, and I have come across a lot of AR-15s that cost north of $640 that won't hold consistent 5 shot 1.5 MOA groups, and I've come across a lot more (and been issued a few M16s) that were nowhere near as reliable.

And $640 is still less than what I had into my PSA AR-15 to get it up to an acceptable minimum standard.

----

From that perspective, if someone has a Mini-14 and wants a well made, functional and practical folding stock to reduce the overall length for a truck gun, etc., $280 probably isn't too much to pay.
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Old 03-21-2020, 04:16 PM
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I've been kicking it around. A local shop had an original rifle with one that sold for $1200. I have the same rifle they show in the ad, and only have about $300 into it. It came in a nice stock I sold off for big $$. So adding $280 wouldn't be that big of a deal.

But where does one get reliable 30 round stainless mags to match?

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Old 03-21-2020, 04:24 PM
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Factory 5,10,20 and 30s were available......................

Are those stocks for the old pencil barrels or the new heavy barrel??

Picture looks like the new heavy barrel
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Old 03-21-2020, 05:10 PM
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Factory 5,10,20 and 30s were available......................

Are those stocks for the old pencil barrels or the new heavy barrel??

Picture looks like the new heavy barrel
Should work with both models. The barrel under the stock/HG is still somewhat thin. I've put both new & old models in a Ruger factory synthetic stock.

I don't think Ruger ever made Factory Stainless mags. And if they did, I'm sure they cost a ton if you could find one.
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Old 03-21-2020, 06:53 PM
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I have one of the new Samson stocks.
It is OK, but, not perfect.
The finish is very light in color. Much lighter than the picture.
The steel stockliner is not at thick as an original Ruger liner and allows the stock to move fore and aft. And when fully extended the stock has quite a bit of play. It doesn't lock up real tight, but, I don't have an original to compare it to.
I replaced the liner, with a Ruger one, I bought from Brownells, and that secures the receiver into the stock nicely. I will most likely sand down the stock, and stain it darker, like the stock the rifle had.
Samson asked me to submit a review, and I did, and pointed out exactly what I put here. But as you'l see, if you go to their website, my review is not there. They've only put on one 5 star review.
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NH1545 View Post
I have one of the new Samson stocks.
It is OK, but, not perfect.
The finish is very light in color. Much lighter than the picture.
The steel stockliner is not at thick as an original Ruger liner and allows the stock to move fore and aft. And when fully extended the stock has quite a bit of play. It doesn't lock up real tight, but, I don't have an original to compare it to.
I replaced the liner, with a Ruger one, I bought from Brownells, and that secures the receiver into the stock nicely. I will most likely sand down the stock, and stain it darker, like the stock the rifle had.
Samson asked me to submit a review, and I did, and pointed out exactly what I put here. But as you'l see, if you go to their website, my review is not there. They've only put on one 5 star review.
Could you post a few pictures?
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Old 03-21-2020, 09:53 PM
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I have one on order, hopefully should be shipped soon. It will go on my ban era ex Branson Mo police Mini 14 GB

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Old 03-21-2020, 10:17 PM
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My partner had one back in 84 or thereabouts. I don't know if it was an original. I shot it a few times and didn't like the feel of it on my cheek. Didn't feel as stable as I wanted, but I didn't shoot it much and might have liked it better with more trigger time. It was convenient, but at that time I didn't place much appreciation on convenience.

Let me go slightly off topic here to talk about Mini 14s. I never really appreciated them until we bought them for patrol rifles 2001, which I as Chief Deputy instigated because I don't especially like handguns when you have a choice. The Mimis were the least expensive 5.56 rifle we could afford, 30 for $300 each and we had severe budget limitations. Basic black synthetic stocks. What I found out is that even inexperienced first-time shooters with a little practice could keep all rounds in the chest area of a target at 75 yards, which was the taught extreme range taught for patrol rifles at that time. In real situations, a lot less. So I got an appreciation for them...as patrol rifles. They're not good for consistent head shots at 150 yards, but that's not the role of a patrol rifle. The deputies loved them...they were simple, rugged, and gave confidence to the troops as another weapon with more firepower than a handgun. I think we were the first SO in GA to issue patrol rifles to all patrol deputies. The first day we trained with them was on 9/11. With cheap Wolf ammo, which rusted the gas system closed and required a complete breakdown and de-rusting of all rifles. And that day muted criticism of my agency spending $9000 on rifles for a small agency.

The reason I know we paid $300 for them is because when my agency re-armed with ARs, we active and retired deputies were allowed to buy them for what we originally paid, so of course I bought one.
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Old 03-22-2020, 12:44 AM
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I've had a pair of Mini-14s with Butler Creeks since forever.
Not as elegant as the factory stocks but extremely solid.
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Old 03-22-2020, 09:20 AM
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I ordered one of these stocks on Jan 27th, 3 days after they went on sale without telling anyone \_(ツ)_/. They started shipping them a couple of weeks ago, and still aren't done with the orders from the first day. If you ordered one today, you'd be looking at months for delivery. The price of the original Ruger stocks isn't trending down yet. Samson is going to have to ramp up production significantly for that to happen. Meanwhile, my 182 GB sits patiently waiting for its A-Team remodel.
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Old 03-22-2020, 09:30 AM
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I've had a pair of Mini-14s with Butler Creeks since forever.
Not as elegant as the factory stocks but extremely solid.



I always liked them and kick myself for never buying one. I believe at the time they were $79.99
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Old 03-22-2020, 04:25 PM
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I ordered one of these stocks on Jan 27th, 3 days after they went on sale without telling anyone \_(ツ)_/. They started shipping them a couple of weeks ago, and still aren't done with the orders from the first day. If you ordered one today, you'd be looking at months for delivery. The price of the original Ruger stocks isn't trending down yet. Samson is going to have to ramp up production significantly for that to happen. Meanwhile, my 182 GB sits patiently waiting for its A-Team remodel.
I ordered mine on Jan. 26
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Old 03-22-2020, 04:54 PM
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I like that they have gotten people excited about the MINI 14 again. It's not a bad rifle....just not a great rifle. The fact that it shoots 223/5.56 ammo which is the most popular rifle round in America right now, makes it a viable option for those who cannot afford an AR15 or live in a ban state
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Old 03-22-2020, 05:39 PM
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I bought my Mini 14 in 1983 because I couldn't afford an AR15. Back then Mini 14's were 70% the cost of an AR. Now a new AR can be had for half the price of a Mini 14.
I've tried to post a picture of the stock liner difference, but haven't figured it out yet. I use Google Photos.
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Old 03-22-2020, 05:59 PM
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I have a Choate side folder. It's pretty solid with a good check weld.

(from Choates website)

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Old 03-22-2020, 07:09 PM
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So, I have a blue original Ruger folding stock new in the original shipping box. Not the rifle, just the stock. I bought it many years ago but never used it as I had a GB folder issued by the Department that I carried for many years. So what is a NIB new Ruger blue folding stock going for?
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Old 03-22-2020, 08:46 PM
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So, I have a blue original Ruger folding stock new in the original shipping box. Not the rifle, just the stock. I bought it many years ago but never used it as I had a GB folder issued by the Department that I carried for many years. So what is a NIB new Ruger blue folding stock going for?
I think you'd be looking at $700+ pretty easily on the auction sites for a brand new one in the box. Keep in mind that Samson is only making a stainless version, so that blued stock is going to hold its value better.
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Old 03-22-2020, 10:34 PM
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Hmm, I don't think it's worth that much to me. I also have a NIB Mini-14 GB with straight wood stock SN prefix 185 also blue with one blue 20 round (the one the folder was purchased for). The box says model 1810. Over 30 years old and I never shot it. I always had another one to shoot. Are they worth anything? Might not be worth what a newer one is worth.
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Old 03-23-2020, 12:00 AM
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Hmm, I don't think it's worth that much to me. I also have a NIB Mini-14 GB with straight wood stock SN prefix 185 also blue with one blue 20 round (the one the folder was purchased for). The box says model 1810. Over 30 years old and I never shot it. I always had another one to shoot. Are they worth anything? Might not be worth what a newer one is worth.
The GB models will bring a premium as well. No idea of value on it, but I would think higher than a brand new standard Mini-14.
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Old 03-23-2020, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
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Hmm, I don't think it's worth that much to me. I also have a NIB Mini-14 GB with straight wood stock SN prefix 185 also blue with one blue 20 round (the one the folder was purchased for). The box says model 1810. Over 30 years old and I never shot it. I always had another one to shoot. Are they worth anything? Might not be worth what a newer one is worth.
Mini 14 GB’s have been sought after and have held value. One thing that has happened over the past five years or so is that a number of Mini 14 GB models were traded in by police departments and sold off as surplus by distributors that dealt in police firearms, that is how I found mine.

What you have is special and may be worth more then you realize to the right person. You have both a new in the box blued Mini 14 GB and a new in the box Ruger blued factory folder.

There are probably very few of these laying around that are in new in the box condition. Used surplus police fixed stock stainless GB’s were going for $450-$650 on Gunbroker auctions a couple of years ago, used factory folders I have seen go for a low of $300 to about $700 over the last few years. These were mostly stainless. I have no idea what either the rifle or the stock would go for in NIB condition.
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Old 03-23-2020, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by mrmike7189 View Post
I like that they have gotten people excited about the MINI 14 again. It's not a bad rifle....just not a great rifle. The fact that it shoots 223/5.56 ammo which is the most popular rifle round in America right now, makes it a viable option for those who cannot afford an AR15 or live in a ban state
Most accurate statement on the Mini-"It's not a bad rifle, just not a great rifle."
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Old 03-23-2020, 03:00 PM
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Most accurate statement on the Mini-"It's not a bad rifle, just not a great rifle."
Someone once described the Mini-14 as the American AK-47
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Old 03-23-2020, 05:29 PM
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The Butler Creek ones were very cool. I kept mine when I sold my Mini to buy a 6920. They go for about $200 on Ebay now.
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Old 03-23-2020, 06:08 PM
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Someone once described the Mini-14 as the American AK-47
More like an American SKS.
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Old 03-23-2020, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
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Someone once described the Mini-14 as the American AK-47
The AR-18/AR-180 is a better fit as an "American AK-47". It's mostly stamped metal with a few easy to machine parts designed for inexpensive production on low tech industrial equipment by low skilled workers - pretty much the polar opposite of the M16/AR-15.

The Mini-14 has more in common with the M-1 Carbine, in terms of the short stroke gas tappet gas system, with of course the obvious M1 Garand and M14 influences in terms of the overall layout, the trigger housing an the detachable box magazine.
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Old 03-23-2020, 08:31 PM
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The GB models will bring a premium as well. No idea of value on it, but I would think higher than a brand new standard Mini-14.
What is a "GB" model? Thanks.
Larry
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Old 03-23-2020, 10:12 PM
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I don't recall what the GB stood for but it isn't really much different from the standard model. As far as I know it was sold only to government and LE, etc. It came with a Ruger 20 round magazine a flash hider and a bayonet lug should you feel the need to bayonet something.
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
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Someone once described the Mini-14 as the American AK-47

That would be the Mini 30


Although the actions are completely different.


My Mini 14 Tactical with the shorter barrel is as accurate as a lot of ARs out there.
The old Min 14 bashing of the older longer barrels may be a kinda true but they were not made to be "match" rifles. Hence the word "Ranch"
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Old 03-24-2020, 07:56 AM
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Someone once described the Mini-14 as the American AK-47
IIRC the reference was more about a utility gun that would run forever without a lot of maintenance and just OK accuracy.


Given the same ammo I guess the Mini-30 would be a closer fit.

The newer models with the shorter 16.2" heavier barrels (under the handguards) are good to go without the "accu-strut" (sp?)

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Old 03-24-2020, 07:58 AM
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What is a "GB" model? Thanks.
Larry

Government barrel


Mini14 GB: The LE Ruger Rifle | Ruger Talk - The Community for Ruger Firearms Owners
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Old 03-24-2020, 08:26 AM
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Close, it stood for Government Bayonet.
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Old 03-24-2020, 09:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BAM-BAM View Post
IIRC the reference was more about a utility gun that would run forever without a lot of maintenance and just OK accuracy.


Given the same ammo I guess the Mini-30 would be a closer fit.

The newer models with the shorter 16.2" heavier barrels (under the handguards) are good to go without the "accu-strut" (sp?)
The later 580 series with the tapered barrel and the subsequent series reportedly meet a 2 MOA accuracy standard. And that seems to be the case based on owner reports.

For the older series that generally isn't the case, for a number of reasons, most of which can be fixed.

My early 180 series Mini-14 shoots 2 MOA groups in its essentially stock form. The only change I made was a Tech Sights rear sight as the prior owner had replaced it with a scope mount. I also turned a new .043" gas bushing for it before discovering that the original was the same size.

Five shots (two in the slightly larger right hand hole) at 50 yards with iron sights and Hornady 55 gr FMJBT handloaded to equivalent M193 velocity:



Here's the practical accuracy, 20 shots sitting at 200 yards looking about 30 degrees off from a soon to be setting sun (the angle is obvious in the picture). Aside from the four obvious fliers (that are my fault), you'll note the group is displaced to the right due to the light conditions affecting the front sight picture:



Based on my experience with my more or less stock 180 series Mini 14, I think Ruger came close to getting it right, right off the bat.

Here are some of the reasons why I think that my 180 series Mini 14 is more accurate than the rest of the pre-580 series in their stock form:

- The 180 series isn't overgassed like every series after it;

- The operating rod is much lighter so it doesn't have the same reciprocating mass as the subsequent series; and

- There was is no potential confusion over the barrel twist (1-10").



I suspect Ruger started over gassing the Mini 14 with the 181 series to ensure reliable functioning with a wide range of civilian ammunition and bullet weights. Ruger then had to beef up the slide assembly to address the higher gas port pressures, with the result that they now had a lot more reciprocating mass that aggravates the harmonics of the pencil weight barrel, turning a 2 MOA rifle into a 4 to 5 MOA rifle.

Ruger also followed the M16A2 trend and switched from a 1-10" twist optimized for 55 gr bullets in the 18" barrel, to 1 in 7" twist barrels in 1987, before switching to a much better/more flexible 1-9" twist in 1997.

If you are buying used and you don't know the series and roughly where the transitions occurred, you don't know what barrel twist you have, unless you check. If a rifle is anywhere near the transition serial numbers, you definitely need to check. It was not a sharp transition as Ruger staff had a habit of grabbing whatever barrel was handy during the transitions so you see rifles significantly before and after with the "wrong" twist. Ruger was also very good about rebuilding rifles for law enforcement agencies at little or no cost, and those factory rebuilds will have whatever barrel was current at the time of the rebuild.

The end result is that accuracy suffers a lot with lower quality FMJ or bulk SP bullets in the lighter weight ranges (62 grains and under) in the faster 1-7" twist barrels. Conversely, accuracy at the heavier weights (over 62 grains) will suffer in the original 1-10" barrels, especially in cold weather.

The current 1-9" twist is a good compromise. It's near ideal for the 62 gr FMJ SS109 projectile used in M855, and works ok for just about everything from 50 to 68 grains.

----

My 184 series Mini 14 was typical of one of the attempts to improve accuracy - reducing the barrel length to 16". The idea was that the shorter barrel would whip less and produce better accuracy. It didn't work. What does help is adding weight to the end of the barrel via muzzle device. The Choate muzzle devices that combine a flash hider with a new front sight have a good reputation for improving accuracy.

My 184 series Mini 14 (1-10" twist barrel) was shortened by a previous owner and shot 4 to 5 MOA at 100 yards when I bought it. I suspect that's why the prior owner sold it. However, with the short SOCOM version of the Accu Strut, a Choate Browning style flash hider, a .045" gas port bushing, shock buffer, and a Tech Sights rear sight it's now a very reliable 1.5 to 2.0 MOA rifle.

Before and after targets at 50 yards, iron sights:




Practical accuracy with iron sights and 55 gr FMJ at 200 yards (sitting) is decent (the low flier is my fault):



----

My 187 series ranch rifle was surplussed by the NC Dept of Corrections. It had a 7 oz monstrosity of a muzzle device that included a long flash hider, a front sight, and a bayonet lug. It had a scope on it in NC service but it was not on the rifle when it was surplussed. I shot it iron sights and discovered it shot a full 8" low at 50 yards with the rear sight as high as it would go. Accuracy however was excellent with 3/4" groups at 50 yards.

I gave it the same accuracy treatment as my 184 series, including a tech sights rear sight, but scoped it.



It shoots a solid 1.5 MOA at 100 yards:



----

In summary, the original 180 series Mini 14 had acceptable 2 MOA accuracy. Accuracy wise it was not quite on par with but still very close to the the 1.5 MOA accuracy typical of the 20" 1-12" twist pencil barrel Colt SP1 AR-15 of the era.

The changes Ruger made in the subsequent pre-580 series made the rifle more flexible in terms of ammunition, but reduced the accuracy, doubling or more than doubling group size to levels that earned the Mini 14 a reputation for poor accuracy. That accuracy generally got worse over the years as the tooling wore out, and it was aggravated in the 1-7 twist years (1987-1997) when used in conjunction with inexpensive 55 gr and 62 gr FMJ rounds.

Ruger made new tooling for the 580 series and there was some improvement in accuracy overall even with the skinny barrel. However, it took the heavier, stiffer tapered barrel to get it back down to a solid 2 MOA.

But I'm confident that most early Mini 14s and Ranch rifles can be made to shoot around 2 MOA or slightly better with the above mentioned accuracy improvements.


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Old 03-24-2020, 09:35 AM
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I have one of the MP40 style underfolders, it looks cool but not comfortable. I think it was from Briklee.
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Old 03-25-2020, 11:15 AM
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Close, it stood for Government Bayonet.



Depends on what information "source" you want to use


Government models

Mini-14 GB


Ruger Mini-14GB with a pistol grip, side folding stock, 30-round magazine, bayonet lug, threaded barrel, flash suppressor and M7 bayonet.


The Mini-14 GB ("government barrel") models feature either a pistol grip, side folding stock or a standard semi-pistol grip rifle stock, a 20 or 30-round magazine, bayonet lug, threaded barrel, and flash suppressor. Proof that GB stands for Government Barrel and not Government Bayonet can be seen in Ruger's new Tactical models and Ruger continuing to use "GB" which are cataloged for example KM-14/20GBCP. These models have no bayonet lug but do have the flash hider. Sales of the models with bayonet lug were intended only for law enforcement, military and private security markets, and could only be found in Ruger's Law Enforcement Catalog. [21] However, many have entered the civilian market.[22]



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruger_Mini-14


OR it could be Grenade and Bayonet or it could be...................
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